Good Bra, Bad Bra Time to play the fitting game….

This may seem off topic but trust me and read on!
You walk into a shoe shop, ask for your little old tootsies to be measured and the assistant rolls out the odd looking measuring contraption.  You slide your foot in and the assistant takes note of your size, for the purpose of this exercise lets say a 5. 
You’re looking for a new pair of trainers, something supportive for when you’re at the gym maybe (or in my case, a new pair of trainers to sit in the hall gathering dust whilst you think about going to the gym or for a jog).  So you’ve told the salesperson what you want, all they need to do is bring you a few shoes to look at and try on.  Now imagine that, upon the sales persons return, you spy the perfect pair in their chubby little hands and just need to try them on to check comfort.  You put your feet in and low & behold…….. you’ve got an extra 2 inches by your toes?!  You’ve been measured at one size but given something different to try on.  Clearly, these will be no good – they’re loose around your ankle, you can’t fasten them tight enough and you could probably squeeze a spare pair of socks in at the toe end.  You would, of course, demand the assistant disappears and returns with the correct size.

Now, let’s change the scenario:

You’ve plucked up the courage to go & get fitted…. You nip into the changing room, whip your bra off (if you’re anything like me you leave your tee shirt on and just wrangle your ill-fitting bra out of a sleeve) and wait for the tape measure. In comes the lovely lady who promptly measures you as follows:

28 Underbust
35 Around bust

She’ll probably then ask you what style you’d like, colour etc then disappear for a few minutes and return with a handful of bra’s that fit your description.  Unfortunately, this is all they will fit….. You try on one of the bra’s, a 32C or D maybe and all seems fine.  But, didn’t the tape measure state that you had a 28 inch back?  Why, exactly, have you now been put into a 32 inch bra?

The reason is the +four rule.  It’s old, it’s outdated and it’s just ridiculous.  Yet so many women are still being told it’s the correct way of fitting.  How many of you tighten your bra straps so much that you have shoulder dents or marks by the end of the day, or the back of your bra is level with with your armpit?  I’m guessing at least 20% of you.  Guess what – a bra’s support comes from the band, NOT the straps.  So unsurprisingly, being in a bra that’s 4 inches larger than you are is going to do diddly squat for support or how your lady lumps look.  As a rough guide, take your back measurement then for every inch difference between that and the larger measurement, add a cup size.  Using the 28/35 measurements you’d go to approx. a 28F. (NB: try out Sophisticated Pairs Bra calculator for a good estimate, I reblogged it a couple of days ago, or google it)  Hell of a difference.  Of course this is just a rough mark to start with, you need to get into a changing room with a few different cup sizes to find your perfect fit, but please, make sure you’ve got the correct back size!!

When you first try it on you’ll instantly feel how much tighter it is, this can take a bit of getting used to after wearing such loose bra’s but just go with it. As long as its not cutting in it’s fine. You will probably also find that different brands fit you differently. You may need to up or downsize depending on this but you soon learn which size you need from which manufacturer. Just the same as clothes shopping really. As for bra style, some will work better than others for you. There’s a few brands I don’t get on with as I have close set waps, so anything with a large gore or high underwire is out for me…… Trial and error is the only way!

Now, go out to Bravissimo or Leia (try and avoid high street department stores) and get fitted. I guarantee your shoulders, back & boobs will thank you for it. Let me know how you get on!


5 thoughts on “Good Bra, Bad Bra Time to play the fitting game….

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